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Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Posted by gcorman 9 (My Page) on
Thu, Dec 26, 02 at 22:39

Hi.

I'm using galvanized stock tanks as raised beds and will never garden in the ground again. I have two kinds, round ones and oblong ones. They vary from 3 to 5 feet wide and sit 2.5 feet tall. They have thin, but strong, walls. All parts of the gardens are easily reached from one side or another. They require some muscle to get set up and need to have holes drilled in the bottom for drainage, but once in place, they are ideal containers. I filled them with a custom mixed soil from a sand and gravel co. and had a lot of organic matter and pumice added to make it very light.

I'm not disabled, but am old enough to appreciate not having to bend over and work soil that's full of tree roots or is compacted from walking. That used to kill my back. Now I hardly bend at all and can prep my gardens in a fraction of the time it used to take. I'd like to hear if anyone else is using these tanks for gardening. I'm sold on them.

I'd also like suggestions for reading about accessible gardening--especially in the southwest. I do garden consulting and would like ideas for helping people of all abilities design gardens that are easy to access and care for. I think one reason more people don't garden is that it's just too hard. Pity that.

Thanks.

Greg Corman


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I sure think you've come up with an excellent idea. I live down the road from a farm supply warehouse. I've looked at those tubs so often and wondered how handy they would be for something other than just watering livestock. Last summer we put up a raised tomato bed from Douglas tree stumps. They were about 6'long. Stacked up to make a 3&1/2' high,x 2&1/2'deep bed. Filled with aged cow manure and dirt from the flood lands of the Skokomish Valley. An excellent rich natural dirt. Our concern is that time will decay the wood and the floods will eventually wash the dirt away. The tomatoes and hot peppers were outragous and were plump until the first frosts in October. My point is, that with your idea of the galvanized tubs for the main bed, and the fir stumps encompasing the whole thing, I will have an attractive, efficient, made to last a long time, planting bed. Easy to reach, easy to plant and good to know it won't go anywhere. Especially across the road as the flood waters recede. This is the valley the news crews film as the first floods arrive. They show the salmon swimming and squiggling across the roads, when the river reaches the flood levels. It's all funny to watch on tv, but a pain for residents to cleanup after the fact.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I like that idea! Even with many holes drilled for drainage it will help keep the moisture in and the tanks are really sturdy!

Lee AKA Fireraven9
The carcass of the beast left over from the feast can still be found haunting the kitchens. - Costello/Chieftains - St. Stephen's Day Murders


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Take a look at the link below for the Buehler Enabling Garden at eh Chicago Botanic Garden. It is an 11,000 sq foot accessible garden and absolutely wonderful. They also sell cutsheets on building raised beds, vertical gardens, general accessibility etc.

Here is a link that might be useful: Chicago Botanic Garden


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

DH (Robin) reminded me that plastic stock tanks may be better. The galvanized type might leech a bit of zinc and it might be better to avoid that. Still, the plastic variety are sturdy.

Lee AKA Fireraven9
And I think of you now as a dream that I had long ago
In a kingdom lost in time.
And in the forests of evening the archer is bending a bow,
And I see you bring him bread and wine. - Al Stewart


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Did you drill the holes in the bottom or on the sides, leaving a small space for a reservoir?


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Aren't the stock tanks used primarily for watering the animal stock? If any zinc is to be absorbed in any way, I'm under new advice that zinc can't hurt us. Or animals, since it's a natural element. That's the same concern that was brought to my attention, after I had posted about the recycled tires, being sliced and fastened end to end, to be used as a border for a raised bed. What about other finds that are used for edible crops, like rusty wheelbarrows for whatever, like lettuce or carrots or others. I dunno, in a garden, it seems there's always something that could be looked at in differing ways. Treated lumber, or worse yet, creosote on railroad ties, are common. That really makes the galvanized tubs seem pristine in comparison. Go figure!


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

  • Posted by hald Sunset 8 (My Page) on
    Thu, Feb 6, 03 at 11:21

I have used stock tanks for the last 10 years. I grew a black pine in one; the tree reached about 25 feet tall before I removed it. I have azaleas in my back yard along a fence that are in stock tanks; they are huge, about 10 feet tall.
The only drawback is how the tanks look. I still haven't figured a way of making the stock tanks attractive. Any ideas? - Hal


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Hello,

Can someone tell me if the silver galvanized tanks at Home Depot are the same item? (Or are these stock tanks specific to farm supply places?)

Thanks!


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I live in a City and I was wondering the same thing as Tangerine was asking in the post just above mine. Could you please be kind enough and direct me to a place where I can purchase these Galvanized Stock Tanks. I had a raised bed made in the front of our house out of very pretty rock, however, it was quite expensive. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Punky.


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Require Infomation on Galvanized Tanks

I am told that I already posted under the orginial subject of your post. I really can't find it, however, I have changed the subject at little, however, my message is the same.RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds
Posted by: punky36 Z5 (My Page) on Tue, Mar 18, 03 at 0:37

I live in a City and I was wondering the same thing as Tangerine was asking in the post just above mine. Could you please be kind enough and direct me to a place where I can purchase these Galvanized Stock Tanks. I had a raised bed made in the front of our house out of very pretty rock, however, it was quite expensive. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Punky


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

How to make them pretty? How about growing vining plants that will drape over the sides like Marguerite sweet potato vines or ivy. Or cut a "skirt" out of that bamboo fencing material.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

What about using wave petunias over the edge?


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Hi everyone,
I realize this thread is older, but I just saw it. I recently bought a 100 gallon Rubbermaid stock tank to grow waterlilies and lotus in. It already has a drain in it. As I was setting it up for my waterplants, it occurred to me that it would be great for raised beds. What's great about it is how much soil would be in it.......so you wouldn't have to worry so much about it drying out so fast. Mine iis 100 gallon and cost about $60. You could easily put a big trellis in it too, for cucs or beans. It could probably hold 3-6 tomato plants easy.
We discussed how to make it look prettier awhile back on the pond forum. Many people get those landscape bricks and build a wall around them. Some people make a little picket fence-type thing right up next to it, while others grow tall flowers around it. I'm not sure which substance would leach into your veggies more.....the plastic tank or the galvanized one. There probably, unfortunately, hasn't been any research on it. I guess if you were worried, you could line it with plastic.......but then what's in the plastic??
I think it's a great idea for raised beds. I got mine at Mennards. They also had a 50 gal and a 70 gallon.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Well, this is an old posted question but since I was doing a search for this idea, I figure others will, too.
I first came across this idea of using galvanized feed tanks when I read an issue of Mary Jane's Farm and then a comprehensive article in our local paper.
I purchased two feed toughs from our local farm store -- sized at 5 1/2 feet long by 2 foot wide by 1 foot deep. I put them on cinder blocks (two deep at each end) after drilling many holes in the bottom. I then laid cloth in the bottom to prevent the soil from running out during rainstorms or watering (didn't know what kind of cloth to get so bought some Sunbrella cloth for making umbrellas at about $2.00 a foot).
Each tank took 10 cubic feet of soil so I think if I had it to do over I would put a layer of pumice in the bottom or us those packing "peanuts" to fill the bottom but not add weight.
I sprayed the cinder blocks with light green paint and they look really good. One idea is to paint the tanks themsleves and I have seen photos of red ones, yellow ones, black ones (this colr would warm the soil a lot). How about letting your kids loose with spray cans?
These galvanized tanks are not cheap; mine cost $120 each but I figure they will last a lot longer than my wooden ones. I even found a two-foot diameter round galvanized but and it is growing a potato plant very well.
Happy gardening!


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Not sure if this is the same thing as the feed troughs. But, I have used old hot water heater tanks. You cut them in half lengthwise. So, one tank makes two beds to plant in. We made a wooden frame on both ends to hold it up. And, most people appreciate you taking their old tanks from them. So, it doesn't cost much to fix these up.


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Paint the hot water heater tanks red

Went back and re-read your posting "seeks-to-know". I have read that certain colors make certain plants grow better. Red containers help tomatoes grow better. I have used red plastic containers to plant tomatoes in. So, now I will paint the outside of my hot water heater beds "red".


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Bonehead question: How do I open the drain plug of this stock tank (I'm using it as a container for bamboo)?

I'm fairly sure the outer octagonal part should stay put, but don't see a good way to get a grip on the central round part to rotate it out. Is there a tool I'm supposed to use?

Here is a link that might be useful: Drain Plug


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Bari Sax, I've never seen a drain plug like that. Why not call the place you bought it from, and ask them? Or see if there is a manufacturer label on it, and track them down.

It looks like you need a special tool, to me.

Sue


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I plan to garden with these stock tanks this year. What about putting foam peanuts in bottom first, to minimize the amount of soil needed. Then lay weed barrier over the peanuts to keep the soil from leaching. Drill holes in sides near the bottom for drainage and to keep critters from burrowing up into the tank after the roots. They wouldn't come in from the side holes, would they? I also am thinking of sterilizing the ground where I plan to put my tanks first, then after tanks are placed, putting down wood mulch....as you can tell, I don't like dealing with weeds....at all!!! I will outline the entire garden with railroad ties to make a boundary for the sterilization and to keep the mulch contained. I am anxious for any and all ideas!


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I use the stock tanks in my Seattle garden. Began gardening with them last year and I am sold! We have a contemporary design house and so the galvanised aluminum works well for us. I love that I can place them wherever the sun is..even against the house or on the patio.I would reccommend using the packing peanuts in bags (sand bags work great, you can buy them at most hardware stores)..that way if you ever want to change the soil out you'll be able to easily seperate the peanuts from the soil.
Go stock tanks!!


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I sure wish I'd thought of using the foam peanuts in bags before I filled the bottoms of my two with broken rock and brick. No way I'm moving those without a fork lift! lol
I got mine because I did some major damage to my back. Typical rasied beds just weren't raised enough for me.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

You can put large plastic soda bottles in the bottom as well. But it seems the ones that are low are still too low. Also don't you still have to lean over....and on those tanks there is really not a comfortable place to sit.
I am gardening even higher so I do not have to really bend much. I have my containers on legs/tables or high benches. Then I can stand. For example, I have the bottom half of an old trunk sitting on a bench I had made out of twin headboards.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

I'm not sure if this thread is still active, but does anyone here know where to purchase stock tanks in Seattle metro area? I am looking for 55-100gal (or about 5ft long) rubbermaid/plastic stock tanks, not galvanized. Thanks!


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Yuko - look in the yellow pages for "ranch supplies" and horse feed. They will have them or know who does.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Everyone is doing so much decorating and recycling wooden pallets into such creative decor/furniture/shelving. One side of a pallet can be used as a trellis and also make a three side enclosure to block the silver tank effect.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

Google Lowe's Seattle. I found them there.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

This is an interesting thread, especially since last spring I set up two big plastic containers used for salt lick and minerals for our cattle. We buy it in these giant black plastic containers and the cows lick it down to nothing PDQ. Now I have two huge containers for my eggplants and peppers in a hot protected place on our patio. The plants are bigger than they ever were in the garden and beginning to give me fruit. We live in a very moderate climate with lots of summer wind which is what gave me the idea to keep them more protected and warm.

I will have to keep my eye on the stock tanks, too. I have raised beds in the garden but they aren't all that high and the bending gets to my back, too. Picking bush beans is a killer now. I could set a stock tank on top of the raised beds for some things. Wonder how that would be???

I don't want to give up gardening, especially veggie, but it is getting harder each year.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

About a third of my garden is in stock tanks. The only reason more of it isn't is because the tanks are so expensive!

I set a piece of PVC pipe with an elbow at the bottom inside one end, then filled the bottom 8 inches or so with gravel. Drilled drain holes right at the top of the gravel line at the other end. Laid a piece of filter fabric over the gravel, and put the dirt on top of that.

Why the PVC? When I need to water the garden I just put the hose into the top of the PVC pipe and let it run till water comes out the drain holes I drilled. Keeps the soil above nicely watered without soaking for a good week.


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RE: Galvanized stock tanks for raised beds

This past March, after researching alot, I decided to go with the 6' long, 1' deep food-grade poly stocktanks from Behlens.
I drilled holes in the bottoms and put 1/2" hardware cloth on the bottoms. I raised one of them with bales of straw, and the other one with cement blocks and wood. I LOVE them. I still have a big traditional garden, but I sure love just walking up to these raised stocktanks and working with the veggies at waist level.

I need to add more soil to them, since it has settled. They do dry out fairly quickly, so they need to be watered fairly frequently if it doesn't rain.
These come in different sizes too, but I'm happy with these.

 photo IMG_0929_zps8e32c928.jpg

stocktank gardens 5-12-2014 photo IMG_0950_zpseabddb6a.jpg


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